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Thought [clear filter]
Sunday, May 24
 

1:00pm EDT

God Was in This Place and I Did not Know: Can Virtual Space be Sacred Space?
Limited Capacity seats available

With synagogues closed and the very real prospect of home-based High Holidays just around the corner, Jews have been scrambling to figure out how to recreate moments of awe and community that normally involve being in the physical presence of others. In this class, we’ll look at the unique challenge of virtualizing sacred spaces, why space matters to religious experience in the first place, and what Jewish communities can do to bring people together under adverse circumstances.

Presenters
avatar for David Zvi Kalman

David Zvi Kalman

Fellow in Residence, Shalom Hartman Institute of North America
David Zvi Kalman is a Fellow in Residence at Shalom Hartman Institute of North America, where he was also in the inaugural cohort of North American David Hartman Center Fellows. David Zvi leads the Kogod Research Center’s Theology research team.He received his PhD from the University... Read More →



Sunday May 24, 2020 1:00pm - 2:00pm EDT
Zoom

1:00pm EDT

Hoarding Toilet Paper: Coveting vs. Contentment
Limited Capacity seats available

In times of calm and stability it is hard enough to decern the difference between needs and wants, but in a time of crisis, perhaps it is harder. Together we will explore the sacred texts and Jewish values regarding coveting and contentment to help us navigate the material challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic and understand our impulse to hoard toilet paper.

Presenters
avatar for Mary Zamore

Mary Zamore

Executive Director, Women’s Rabbinic Network
Rabbi Mary L. Zamore is the Executive Director of the Women’s Rabbinic Network. Supporting and advocating for Reform women rabbis, while bettering all, WRN works to narrow the wage gap, create safer, respectful Jewish communities and promote equity. Rabbi Zamore is the co-leader... Read More →


Sunday May 24, 2020 1:00pm - 2:00pm EDT
Zoom

1:00pm EDT

Shavuot: The Origins of the Bible’s Most Cryptic Holiday
Limited Capacity seats available

Jews today associate Shavuot with the receiving of the Torah at Sinai, but many sort of know that the Torah does not actually connect Shavuot with Sinai. But the mystery of Shavuot goes deeper. Shavuot does not even have a date in the Torah, and in Second Temple times, the date of Shavuot was one of most divisive issues among ancient Jews. In this class we will try to sort out this mystery by looking at Biblical texts, Dead Sea Scrolls and rabbinic texts that relate to Shavuot.

Presenters
avatar for Joshua Kulp

Joshua Kulp

Rosh Yeshiva, Conservative Yeshiva
Joshua Kulp is the Rosh Yeshiva of the Conservative Yeshiva. He is the author of three books, The Schechter Haggadah, and Reconstructing the Talmud, volumes 1and 2. His Mishnah Commentary is found on Sefaria and he is currently working on Daf Shevui, a Talmud commentary sent out weekly... Read More →


Sunday May 24, 2020 1:00pm - 2:00pm EDT
Zoom

1:00pm EDT

The Teshuvah in My Baalat Teshuvah Journey: Confronting Faith, Reason and Modernity
Limited Capacity full
Adding this to your schedule will put you on the waitlist.

As someone who took on religious observance after leaving her parents' home at 19, the path was windy for Mayim Bialik and some of her deepest held beliefs about God, faith, feminism, and science were challenged. How do we reconcile all of these parts of ourselves and why do some of us choose a life of observance? Join Mayim in conversation about questions with which we all wrestle, no matter our level of observance or commitment to Jewish law. Let's talk about it!

Presenters
avatar for Mayim Bialik

Mayim Bialik

Actress, Scientist, Mother
Mayim Hoya Bialik is best known for portraying Bette Midler as a child in “Beaches” as well as her subsequent lead role as Blossom Russo in the early-1990s NBC television sitcom “Blossom.” Bialik most recently appeared regularly on the #1 comedy in America, CBS' “The Big... Read More →


Sunday May 24, 2020 1:00pm - 2:00pm EDT
Zoom

2:00pm EDT

Collective Tragedy and Personal Grief: The Politics of Mourning
Limited Capacity seats available

How does a society commemorate collective tragedy? What is the role of the individual in communal rites of mourning? In this session, we will examine the history and customs of Sefirat Ha-Omer as a model for mourning in the current crisis.

Presenters
avatar for Sara Labaton

Sara Labaton

Sara was a founding faculty member of Yeshivat Hadar, where she developed a Bible and Exegesis curriculum. She has taught in a variety of Jewish settings, most recently as a history instructor at the Frisch School. Her research interests include the intersection of ritual and relevance... Read More →



Sunday May 24, 2020 2:00pm - 3:00pm EDT
Zoom

2:00pm EDT

Not FROM Heaven: What if Just People Wrote the Torah?
Limited Capacity seats available

The Torah is our earliest Jewish book, but what if, like other books, it was written and assembled by people alone? This could transform Jewish holidays, liturgy, education and rituals - or not! It might also let us claim the Torah even more strongly as a work of the Jewish people.

Presenters
avatar for Adam Chalom

Adam Chalom

Dean - North America, International Institute for Secular Humanistic Judaism
Rabbi Adam Chalom (pronounced “shalom” à la français) is Dean for North America of the International Institute for Secular Humanistic Judaism and Rabbi of Kol Hadash Humanistic Congregation in suburban Chicago. He has led conferences on young adult children of intermarriage... Read More →


Sunday May 24, 2020 2:00pm - 3:00pm EDT
Zoom

2:00pm EDT

The God of Judaism Is a God of Love: Undoing Pernicious Stereotypes
Limited Capacity seats available

It is one of the last acceptable prejudices in American culture: the God of the "Old Testament" is a God of vengeance, focused on strict justice rather than mercy, given to anger rather than love.  This perception is as mistaken as it is widespread.  In this lecture, we'll encounter a series of biblical texts that make the stunning claim that what makes God unique, what makes God God, is God's unfathomable capacity for love, mercy, and forgiveness.  We'll explore the common complaint that a God of love is (too) anthropomorphic, and we'll ask whether belief in a God of love is still plausible in this day and age.

Presenters
avatar for Shai Held

Shai Held

President and Dean, WGF/DS 7
Shai Held is President, Dean, and Chair in Jewish Thought at Mechon Hadar. A 2011 recipient of the prestigious Covenant Award for excellence in Jewish education, Shai's first book, Abraham Joshua Heschel: The Call of Transcendence, was published by Indiana University Press in 2013... Read More →



Sunday May 24, 2020 2:00pm - 3:00pm EDT
Zoom

3:00pm EDT

For in His Image: Slavery, Individualism and the Changing Meaning of Liberty
Limited Capacity seats available

Shavuot, which follows Passover, commemorates the reception of the Torah, which comes after the exodus from Egypt. But if the People of Israel's escape from slavery ends only in another bondage, this time to the Torah, can we really talk about a passage from slavery to freedom? In this session we will examine the different conception of liberty that was shared by our ancestors, and the transformations it went through with the rise of Christianity and the struggle against global slavery, based on the conception of the Image of God.

Presenters
avatar for Tomer Persico

Tomer Persico

Shalom Hartman Institute
Dr. Tomer Persico is the scholar-in-residence for the Shalom Hartman Institute in the San Francisco Bay Area, and the Koret Visiting Assistant Professor of Jewish and Israel Studies at UC Berkeley.



Sunday May 24, 2020 3:00pm - 4:00pm EDT
Zoom

3:00pm EDT

Witness: Lessons from Elie Wiesel's Classroom
Limited Capacity seats available

Ariel Burger is the author of a book about Holocaust survivor, Nobel Prize winner, author, and activist Elie Wiesel. He met Professor Wiesel as a teenager, then became one of his closest students and teaching assistants. What is the role of memory? How might we respond to challenges, from war to hunger to pandemic, with grace, compassion, and courage? What Jewish wisdom can help us to do so? Bring your questions and an open heart.

Presenters
avatar for Rabbi Ariel Burger

Rabbi Ariel Burger

Founder, The Witness Institute
Ariel Burger is the founding director and senior scholar of The Witness Institute, a new project to empower emerging leaders, inspired by the life and legacy of Elie Wiesel. He is an author, artist, and teacher whose work integrates spirituality, the arts, and strategies for social... Read More →


Sunday May 24, 2020 3:00pm - 4:00pm EDT
Zoom

4:00pm EDT

Torah is from Heaven Like Bread is from the Earth: When and How Tradition and Creativity Become One
Limited Capacity seats available

We often feel torn between the vastness of Jewish tradition and the creative impulses of our unique souls and times. But what if the tradition itself offered a surprising, hopeful way out of this conflict – a path that holds out hope of uniting creativity and authenticity? Our learning will focus on a single midrash that uses the image of bread-baking as the paradigm for Torah study – with an eye towards Shavuot, with its pairing of the grain harvest and the giving of the Torah. All sources will be in English and Hebrew, and personal reflection will be our ultimate goal.

Presenters
avatar for Jason Rubenstein

Jason Rubenstein

Rabbi Jason Rubenstein is the second Howard M. Holtzmann Jewish Chaplain at Yale and senior rabbi of the Joseph Slifka Center. A native of Washington DC and a proud product of Temple Micah, Rabbi Rubenstein spent formative years at Yeshivat Ma’ale Gilboa in the Galilee and received... Read More →



Sunday May 24, 2020 4:00pm - 5:00pm EDT
Zoom

4:00pm EDT

Why They Burned Maimonides' Masterpiece & Why You Should Read It
Limited Capacity filling up

Over the centuries, the Guide for the Perplexed has been banned and burned, shockingly, by other Jews. Learn what Maimonides says about God, science, law, and suffering and see how the greatest Jewish mind of the Middle Ages turned everything we thought we knew about Judaism upside-down.

Presenters
avatar for Rabbi Adam Greenwald

Rabbi Adam Greenwald

Vice President for Jewish Engagement, American Jewish University
Rabbi Adam Greenwald is Vice President for Jewish Engagement at American Jewish University, where he oversees the Maas Center for Jewish Journeys and the Miller Introduction to Judaism Program. Rabbi Greenwald is also a Lecturer in Rabbinics at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies... Read More →


Rambam pdf

Sunday May 24, 2020 4:00pm - 5:00pm EDT
Zoom
 
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